Optical frequency combs (OFCs), consisting of a set of phase-locked, equally spaced laser frequency lines, have enabled a great leap in precision spectroscopy and metrology since seminal works of Hänsch et al. Nowadays, OFCs are cornerstones of a wealth of further applications ranging from chemistry and biology to astrophysics and including molecular fingerprinting and light detection and ranging (LIDAR) systems, among others. Driven passive optical resonators constitute the ideal platform for OFC generation in terms of compactness and low energy footprint. We propose here a technique for the generation of OFCs with a tuneable repetition rate in externally driven optical resonators based on the gain-through-filtering process, a simple and elegant method, due to asymmetric spectral filtering on one side of the pump wave. We demonstrate a proof-of-concept experimental result in a fibre resonator, pioneering a new technique that does not require specific engineering of the resonator dispersion to generate frequency-agile OFCs.
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Funding: Ministry of Higher Education and Research, Hauts de France council and European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) through the Contrat de Projets Etat-Region (CPER Photonics for Society, P4S) and FEDER through the HEAFISY project. Leverhulme Trust Fellowship.
- frequency combs
- nonlinear optics
- optical spectroscopy